Lawyer Charles Kanjama Files Case Against BBI

  • President Uhuru Kenyatta (Left) and Raila Odinga at KICC in Nairobi for the National launch of BBI signatures collection exercise. November 25, 2020.
    President Uhuru Kenyatta and Raila Odinga at KICC in Nairobi for the National launch of BBI signatures collection exercise. November 25, 2020.
    PSCU
  • Lawyer Charles Kanjama on Monday, February 24, filed a case in Milimani Law Courts challenging the signature verification process that was carried out to support the Building Bridges Initiative(BBI) referendum.

    Kanjama, in his application, terms the entire decision of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) as unreasonable.

    The IEBC conducted the signature verification process whose results ascertained that the Building Bridges Initiative Constitutional Amendment Bill 2020 was supported by at least one million registered voters.

    Lawyer Kanjama argues that voter education was not carried out to enlighten the voters. He wants the court to quash the IEBC decision to transmit the BBI Constitutional Amendment Bill 2020 to the 47 counties across the country.

    Charles Kanjama
    Charles Kanjama during a press conference on March 20. 2018.
    The Standard

    He further argues that the process carried out on signature verification is invalid, unconstitutional and unlawful.

    Kanjama also pointed out that he wrote a letter to IEBC, where he sought to know whether the commission had an already existing signature database. According to Kanjama, IEBC in its response admitted to not carrying out a verification process for signatures to ascertain the support of the bill by one million registered voters.

    He also added that IEBC said that it lacked the capacity and legal obligation to carry out the verification process for signatures. Moreover, Kanjama said that IEBC claiming to have verified signatures through a press release was a misinterpretation of facts, since they admitted to not verifying the signatures.

    Due to this, Kanjama called for declaration of the continued debating and passing of the Building Bridges Initiative Constitutional Amendment Bill 2020 by County Assemblies as null and void following his findings.

    This comes after over 35 counties passed the BBI Bill by Tuesday, February 23. In line with this, the bill is now set to move to parliament where the final vote will be taken to decide if Kenyans will vote the proposals of BBI in a referendum.

    With the passing of the Bill, the proposed referendum is on course as the plan by the BBI secretariat was to complete the county approval stage by the end of February.

    According to the schedule, the Parliamentary stage will have to be concluded by the end of April. 

    President Uhuru Kenyatta appending his signature on the Constitution Of Kenya (Amendment) Bill, 2020 at KICC on November 25, 2020
    President Uhuru Kenyatta appending his signature on the Constitution Of Kenya (Amendment) Bill, 2020 at KICC on November 25, 2020
    PSCU